Arab and Turkish Invasions




Arab and Turkish Invasions:

Muhammad bin Qasim of the Ummayad dynasty attacked Sindh in the year 712 C.E. He conquered the entire region from Sindh to Multan. The Arabs' first concern was to facilitate the conquest of Sindh with the fewest casualties while also trying to preserve the economic infrastructure. Towns were given two options: submit to Islamic authority peacefully or be attacked by force (anwattan), with the choice governing their treatment upon capture. The capture of towns was usually accomplished by means of a treaty with a party from among the enemy, who were then extended special privileges and material rewards. In India, the Islamic rule was established by the Turks. They attacked India several times. None of the rulers in India could successfully resist them. The Turks looted enormous wealth from India. Many kingdoms were destroyed and Islamic rule was established. In the 11th century, Sultan Sabuktigin of Ghazni in Afghanistan attacked King Jaipal of Punjab. His kingdom was spread from Hindukush Mountains to the River Chenab. After the death of Sabuktgin, his son Mahmud became the Sultan of Ghazni. He invaded India for seventeen times (1001 to 1018 CE) with the aim of looting and spreading Islam. After Mahmud of Ghazni, the series of Invasions of Muhammad Ghuri on India began. He was very ambitious. Along with looting India, his main intention was to establish his rule in India. The Rajput king Prithviraj Chauhan opposed him. Two wars were fought between the two rulers. They are known as ‘Battles of Tarain’. Prithviraj Chauhan was defeated in the Second Battle of Tarain. Muhammad Ghori is credited with laying the foundation of Muslim rule in the Indian subcontinent, which lasted for several centuries. Chahalgani was the council of Turkic and non-Turkic nobles that administered the Delhi Sultanate. Muhammed Ghuri appointed one of his slaves, Qutubuddin Aibak to administer the province of Delhi and surrounding regions.

Aibak's tenure as a Ghurod Dynasty administrator lasted from 1192 to 1206, a period during which he led invasions into the Gangetic heartland of India and established control over some of the new areas. After the death of Muhammad Ghuri, Qutubuddin Aibak became the first Sultan of Delhi. He is the founder of the ‘Slave Dynasty’ (Mamluk dynasty).


One needs to cross Hindukush to enter Pakistan from Afghanistan. This route goes across Khyber Pass. This pass has proved to be very important in Indian history. During the ancient period, the trade between India and Central Asia was carried via this pass. After the Persian Emperor Darius, Alexander came, to India, via this pass. During mediaeval period Mahmud Ghazni, Babur, Nadir Shah, and Ahmed Shah Abdali also came to India via this pass. In the 20th century, the British built a railway line with its last destination at a place called ‘Jamrud’ near Peshawar in Pakistan. Jamrud is the doorway of Khyber pass. This railway track runs about 52 kilometers. There are 34 tunnels and 92 small and big bridges on it.

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